HVAC Condensate Lines: What Every Homeowner Should Know

Make sure to get annual maintenance on your HVAC systems to uphold your warranties.

HVAC Condensate Lines: What Every Homeowner Should Know

HVAC Condensate Lines: What Every Homeowner Should Know

30 August 2017
, Blog

It is a fact that most home plumbing problems involve clogged toilets and slow drains. But as every smart homeowner knows, avoiding emergency repair bills is crucial to maintaining a healthy home budget. This is why it is important for every homeowner to also understand how to maintain another important plumbing component in their home - the HVAC condensate line. 

Understanding the purpose of the condensate line

HVAC condensation lines are responsible for handling the moisture, known as condensate, that forms when warmer air enters the cooling system and is chilled by the cooling coil of the home's air conditioning system. This moisture is collected under the coil in the condensate drain pan, and then directed through plumbing lines to either an interior floor drain or through the wall or roof to an exterior point where it can drip without harming the home. To prevent potential issues with bacterial growth that can occur in standing water, this line must be plumbed at the correct angle to ensure that it can drain quickly and keep up with the formation of condensate, even in heavy usage situations. 

Understanding the importance of the drip

Many of the same problems that affect the home's water and sewer lines can also affect the HVAC system's condensation lines, such as leaks, clogs, and damage to pipes and joints. In addition to these issues, homeowners will also need to learn to watch for and recognize other issues, such as the amount of water discharged from the HVAC system. 

In homes where the air conditioning components are installed on the roof or in the attic, the condensation line exterior discharge point is often plumbed directly over one of the home's prominent windows. This is done deliberately to help homeowners notice potential problems in the amount of condensate being discharged. Homeowners who suddenly notice an unusual amount of dripping water when looking out of the window should consider this an alert that the system is struggling with a potential plumbing problem and call their plumbing expert before it worsens. 

Understanding the need for periodic inspection

Settling of the home, age, material defects, and workmanship issues can all affect the condition and performance of your home's HVAC condensation lines. Homeowners who want to avoid damage to other building materials from a leaking or clogged condensation line should consider having their lines examined periodically and repaired or replaced as needed. 

For more detailed information about your home's condensate lines or to arrange to have them inspected, repaired, or replaced, contact a reputable HVAC repair and installation company like AAA Home Services in your area. 

About Me
It's More Important Than You Think

I used to routinely get calls from HVAC contractors in my area offering annual maintenance contracts. As soon they would identify themselves, I would quickly say no thank you and hang up. After all, my heating and cooling system was working fine. Why would I spend money on services I clearly didn't need? Boy was I wrong! A few years ago, my AC unit suddenly stopped working. I called my HVAC contractor to have it repaired and assumed that my warranty would pick up the bill. That was until I learned my warranty was voided due to a lack of maintenance. Out of nowhere, my decision to ignore those maintenance calls was about to cost me more than a $1,000. I know there are others out there like me. It is my hope that this site will provide them with the knowledge they need to avoid the mistakes I made.